dr bobby bhasker rao

Bobby Bhasker-Rao, 
M.D., F.A.C.S., A.S.M.B.S.

A decade of excellence in robotic weight loss surgery.

June Allan Corrigan Current PSL, Health & Wellness

dr bobby bhasker rao
From left: Brianna Anaya MA, Sarina Contreras, Courtney Pogue MS RDN, Bobby Bhasker-Rao MD, Alexis Villavicencio MA, and Heather Lewis FNP-C.


There is nothing like a ten-year milestone to banish any doubts. A decade ago, leading weight-loss surgery specialist Dr. Bobby Bhasker-Rao performed the very first robotic bariatric procedure in Southern California and the rest, as they say, is history. Now in his 17th year practicing in the Valley, Bhasker-Rao — known to patients as Dr. Bobby — holds the distinction of being the most experienced robotic bariatric surgeon on the West Coast. As an early adopter of the renowned da Vinci robotic surgical system, Dr. Bobby trailblazed a path many surgeons now eagerly follow.

dr bobby bhasker rao palm springs

Bobby Bhasker-Rao, MD, FACS, FASMBS

An early adopter and innovator of robotic surgery
“I was surrounded by skepticism in the beginning. My practice was established. I had a solid reputation, but patients and colleagues all wondered why I wanted to adopt this new technology despite already achieving excellent outcomes,” says Dr. Bobby. Although many questioned his methods, no one ever doubted his bariatric expertise. “When I said there is new technology that provides a better way of doing things, doctors and patients alike trusted my judgement and were willing to try it.” He began and with each successive robotic bariatric surgery he performed and continues to successfully perform, he proved his theory. Now, a decade later, surgeons around the country are appreciating the value of robotics in improving their surgical outcomes and seek out Dr. Bobby to learn how to utilize this technology and incorporate it into their practices.

Dr. Bobby serves as a key opinion leader and educator on the method and intricacies of da Vinci robot assisted surgeries. Surgeons come to observe him in the operating room, and he frequently travels to other hospitals to train them in person. “I teach advanced level courses at training centers across the country, all in an effort get surgeons up to speed with the technology so they too can perform robotic surgery.” Patients, meanwhile, benefit from his expertise as well as his perspective.

Extending care above and beyond

Robotic surgery favors a surgeon ergonomically, and it stands to reason a less tired doctor is a more effective one with this cutting-edge technology.  “The surgeon is sitting down and operating. He or she is able to see with much greater clarity, and to perform more complex operations and procedures they never would have attempted laparoscopically,” Dr. Bobby explains. For his part, he is now able to tackle more complex revisional procedures he formerly would have turned down. It is an aspect of his practice that has grown significantly. “I’m able to help a wider spectrum of patients because I can do a lot more.”

Obesity surgery is not just about weight loss

Obesity sufferers’ prime motivation may be to shed pounds, but Dr. Bobby is quick to stress — and patients are often surprised to learn — a single operation can clear up chronic health problems that have plagued them for years. There are approximately 30 co-morbidities associated with obesity including Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and obstructive sleep apnea. Post-surgery many of these disappear virtually overnight. “Bariatric surgery is a tool.


Dr. Bobby has been named a Top Doctor for nine consecutive years.

Patients just have to use it correctly.” To assist patients better utilize their newly acquired tool, Dr. Bobby relies on the expertise of his staff including dietitian Courtney Pogue, M.S., R.D., who customizes complete nutrition, exercise and behavioral modification plans for each patient both pre- and post-procedure and Heather Lewis, FNP-C who helps educate and encourage compliance post-operatively.

Ongoing Recognition

Nationally recognized as Best of the Best among Bariatric Surgeons, Dr. Bobby is also recognized as a Top Bariatric Surgeon and a Top Doctor nine years in a row. He currently serves as the Director of the Bariatric Program at EMC which has been re-accredited as a comprehensive bariatric program and a Center of Excellence by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP). Dr. Bobby is one of very few surgeons in the country able to boast a zero-mortality rate and consistently superior outcomes.

Lite Life Surgery
35900 Bob Hope Drive, Suite 205
Rancho Mirage, CA 92270